Cubs: Standings prediction for the 2020 MLB season
Hard to see a team not named the Los Angeles Dodgers win the division.
1st place: Los Angeles Dodgers
They are the favorites to go all the way for several reasons. Star Mookie Betts was acquired from Boston to play along with Cody Bellinger, Justin Turner, Corey Seager, Max Muncy and Joc Pederson. That is a scary lineup. The rotation features baseball’s best in Clayton Kershaw, Walker Buehler and Julio Urias. A team does not want to enter the ninth inning trailing against them and having to face stud closer, Kenley Jansen. Anyone who follows baseball knows this team is stacked, as is their farm system. Feels like a matter of time before they finally win it all.
2nd place: Arizona Diamondbacks
This team surprised many last year winning 85 games, which was much more than predicted. Christian Walker, Ketel Marte, and Eduardo Escobar provide good power and run production with young catcher Carson Kelly showing some decent promise. A lot of baseball fans were amazed when the Diamondbacks acquired former Giants ace, Madison Bumgarner, to top off the rotation. Will this team be good enough to make a long run? Probably not. But they can be competitive and be in a playoff race.
3rd place: San Diego Padres
Year two of Manny Machado will be interesting for the Friars. They boast some of baseball’s best prospects, including Fernando Tatis Jr., who we got a good taste of last year. Veterans Eric Hosmer, Wil Myers and Tommy Pham will try to provide some decent production in the lineup. Chris Paddack looks like a promising young starting pitcher and Kirby Yates is as an elite closer. There is a lot of talent in their system, and the next few years can be very exciting, though there is still some building to be done.
4th place: Colorado Rockies
Star third baseman Nolan Arenado will be in year two of his eight-year, $260 million, extension. The offense will score some runs as usual with Charlie Blackmon (who is recovering from COVID-19, Trevor Story and Daniel Murphy. They will not have Ian Desmond has he opted out of the 2020 season. They did add veteran Matt Kemp who will likely play DH this year. The rotation’s best pitcher is probably going to be Jon Gray, but the staff overall will not be spectacular. After winning 71 games last year, the team has not made many upgrades.
5th place: San Francisco Giants
This team has been going through significant changes in the past few years. Losing Bumgarner was tough for them, but somewhat expected. Johnny Cueto and Jeff Samardzija are being relied on to be the top starters. The lineup is not exactly murderer’s row, especially with the team’s biggest star, Buster Posey, opting out of the 2020 season.
Evan Longoria and Pablo Sandoval are well past their primes, and there is just not a lot of pop at all in the lineup. The biggest guy to watch is Mike Yastrzemski, who showed last year he has 20-homer power even being a late bloomer. The biggest question is if he can keep building on it. Their farm system is getting better, and the future for them looks better than now.
Buckle up for very odd MLB season folks. A lot can happen, and these predictions can be completely wrong. Let’s just hope they can get through it safely and healthy.